Every not-so-young car-aficionado will remember all the alcohol and tobacco sponsors that were allowed to sponsor without limitations in the 70s and 80s. If the sponsorship would have worked out the way marketing directors would have hoped, a lot of racing fans would be alcoholic. A few names will pop-up such as Rothmans Porsche, Marlboro Ferrari and of course: Martini Racing. Some might say, more people know Martini Racing than its origin – the Martini Vermouth, manufactured by Martini & Rossi since 1863 near Turin, Italy.

Most iconic car livery in the world

Martini Racing became an icon of motorsport history – also, because of their beautiful livery. Look at all the other liveries out there. There is not a single one besides Martini Racing that works with all the different cars and car designs, from Rally to Formula 1. From the moment Martini Racing used the stripes, the livery has been characterized by blue and red stripes that covered most parts of the car including the roof. The body however, is mostly white but there have been cars with a different base color such as silver, black or red.

Martini Racing Jacket

Martini Racing Jacket

Martini Racing Vest

Martini Racing Vest

Martini Racing & Porsche

When Martini entered racing in 1962, they didn’t have the stripes. Even when the racing division became “Martini Racing” in 1968 with a debut at the Hockenheimring, the Porsche 907 didn’t have the stripes. It wasn’t until the late 70s when Martini Racing officially began using the stripes with the sponsorship of the Porsche 917, that Martini began sponsoring in 71. So Porsche was the first car brand sponsored by Martini Racing. The first success was in 71 with the Porsche 917 winning the 24 hours of Le Mans. 

Porsche Martini Racing RSR

Martini Racing Porsche 911 RSR

In 1978, the Martini Racing World Rally Championship cars became icons. Also known as Safari Porsches, Porsche had a number of successes with drivers like Bjorn Waldegard. At Le Mans, the Porsche 936 in 1978 and the Porsche 908 two years later were a big success with Jacky Ickx. That was also the last appereance at Le Mans for Porsche and Martini Racing.

But also other teams competed in different motorsport disciplines under the Martini Racing brand, Lancia in the World Rally Championship, Lancia and Porsche in the World Sportscar Championship, Brabham and Lotus in Formula 1 and Alfa in Touring races.

1978 Porsche 911 SC Rally

1978 Porsche 911 SC Rally

Martini Racing & Lancia

Martini Racing started supporting Lancia in 1981 in endurance races, later Martini Racing got involved in Lancias rally programme. The Lancia 037 Rally became the icon of that generation with a first team victory at the World Rallye Championship in 1983, with Walter Röhrl as one of the drivers. When Audi had their debut with the Quattro, Lancia lost to Audi in 1984, but Lancia brought the Lancia Delta S4 in 1985 and later the Lancia Delta HF Integrale who dominated the rally scene for a number of glorious years.

Lancia Martini Racing

Lancia Delta HF Integrale Martini Racing

Martini Racing & Formula 1

In Formula 1, Martini Racing left the championship after two disappointing seasons but returned in 1975 with Brabham to win their maiden win at the 1975 Brazilian Grand Prix. Carlos Pace was the driver in the Brabham BT44B. Carlos Reutemann won the German Grand Prix in the same year. In 1979, Marini Racing became sponsor of the Lotus Team who was the 1978 Formula 1 Championship in drivers’ and teams’ competition with Mario Andretti as the World Champion. However, neither Lotus as a team nor Mario Andretti managed to defend their titles. Martini Racing withdrew from Formula 1 that year, not scoring a single win. It was 2014 when Martini Racing returned to Formula 1 to sponsor the Williams team.

Martini Racing T-Shirt red

Red Martini Racing Porsche RSR shirt

Martini Racing T-Shirt grey

Grey Martini Racing Porsche RSR shirt

Martini Racing & Momo

Martini also has a strong relationship with Momo. Over decades, Momo produces a number of steering wheels for Martini Racing, however the ones for Martini Racings Rally Cars became icons and are much sought after today. Like with a number of other Momo steering wheels, the designs have been reused, these wheels were available as Momo Mod 02 and Momo Mod 07 steering wheels.

Momo Martini Racing Steering Wheel

Martini Racing Steering Wheel by Momo

Momo Martini Racing Steering Wheel - Martini Racing engraving

Martini Racing engraving

Martini Racing Merchandise

Martini Racing, a long history with the most beautiful and versatile car livery in the world. No wonder why all the merchandise is so popular as well. When I got the red shirt as a present, I’ve looked around and found some other cool stuff. Love the jacket, perfect when it cools down in the evening. Maybe you like it too, all available on Amazon.

Porsche Martini Racing Base Cap

Porsche Genuine No. 21 Martini Racing Team Cap Navy

Porsche RSR Martini Racing

Porsche 911 Carrera RSR, No.5, Martini racing model car

Martini Racing Coffee Mug

Martini Racing Coffee Mug

Martini Racing Duffle Bag

Martini Racing Duffle Bag